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China 80, New York 65, Michigan 28, Mr. Levin 25, U.s. 24, United States 23, Mr. Pallone 17, California 15, Mr. Rangel 13, Illinois 11, Mr. Nadler 10, Mr. Shimkus 10, Louisiana 8, New Jersey 8, New York City 6, Mr. Waxman 6, Mr. Smith 6, Zadroga 5, Mr. Barton 5, Maloney 5,
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  CSPAN    U.S. House of Representatives    News/Business.  

    September 29, 2010
    1:00 - 5:00pm EDT  

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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 234, the nays are 183. without objection, the motion --
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the resolution is adopted. without objection, the motion to reskr laid on the table -- reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. speaker, by direction of the committee on energy and commerce, i present a privileged report to accompany house resolution 1561 for filing under the rule. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title. the clerk: report to accompany house resolution 1561, resolution directing the secretary of health and human services to transmit to the house of representatives copies of each portion of any document, record or communication in her possession consisting of or relating to documents prepared by or for the centsers for medicare and medicaid purposes regarding the patient protection and affordable care act and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar and ordered printed.
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the chair lays before the house a following enrolled bill. the clerk: senate 3847, an act to implement certain defense trade cooperation treaties and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. will members take their conversations off the floor. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? >> mr. speaker, pursuant to house resolution 1674, i call up h.r. 847 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 321, h.r. 847, a bill to amend the public health service act, to extend and improve protections and services to
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individuals directly impacted by the terrorist attack in new york city on september 11, 2001, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 1674 in lieu of the amendments recommended by the committee on judiciary, now printed in the bill, the amendments in the nature of a substitute printed in house report 111-648 is adopted and the bill as amended is considered read. the bill shall be debatable for one hour with 30 minutes equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority members of the committee on energy and on commerce. 20 minutes equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on judiciary and 10 minutes equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on ways and means. the gentleman from california, mr. waxman, and the gentleman from texas, mr. barton, each will control 15 minutes.
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the gentleman from new york, mr. nadler, and the gentleman from texas, mr. smith, each will control 2010 minutes. the gentleman from michigan, mr. leven, and the gentleman from michigan, mr. camp, each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized but will suspend for one minute. the house will be in order. the gentleman may continue. mr. nadler: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of the james zadroga compensation act. on september 11, 2001, al qaeda orkstrate the deadliest terrorist attack in american history, killing almost 3,000 people and wounding thousands more. the attacks created an environmental nightmare as hundreds of tons of every contaminant known to man and woman came into the streets and
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the can yons of manhattan and brooklyn -- canyons of manhattan and brooklyn and you can see pictures of this in front of us. into this toxic crowd ran firefighters and police and other first responders. first responders came from all 50 states to aid in the rescue and cleanup of the subsequent days. the environmental protection administration, e.p.a., despite ample evidence to the contrary kept falsely proclaiming that the air was safe to breathe. it wasn't. the terrorists caused environmental catastrophe but the federal government compounded the damage by telling people the environment was safe when it wasn't and now thousands of people are sick and in need of special care. we have a moral obligation to treat those who became ill and that's what this bill is all about. for eight years representative maloney and i supported a bipartisan basis by the new york delegation and others have worked to bring this bill to the floor. now it is finally time to pass it. time and again, as we move this bill through the legislative
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process, we've adjusted it, reduced its size and scope, limited its cost and made concessions to broaden the coalition and lower the cost to the taxpayers. we worked with our colleagues on the other side of the aisle to reopen the victims compensation fund in a responsible way, in order to protect contractors from liability so they would not find they sacrifice their businesses to serve their country. we even agreed to cap attorneys' fees. on the victim compensation fund, this house, indeed this congress, passed the victims compensation fund almost unanimously a week or two after 9/11. unfortunately people who should have been compensated by that fnd could not be because their sick -- fund could not be. had we known that they would become ill, we certainly would have included them unanimously. that's why ken feinberg, testifying by the judiciary committee, urges us to reopen the fund, which is one half of this bill. he said in march of last year, quote, it is truly ironic that
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many of these very individuals who have filed lawsuits seeking compensation are the same type of individuals who received payments from the 9/11 fund. had these individuals manifested a physical injury before the 9/11 fund expired, they too would have received compensation without litigating. he went on to say, reenacting the law and establishing the federal september 11 victim compensation fund for an additional period of years to provide the same public compensation to eligible physical injury claim ants could be justified on grounds of basic fairness. now is our chance to right that wrong and provide that basic fairness of which he speaks. i know that some members are concerned about the cost of providing the victims compensation fund assistance and the health care for the survivors and first responders. let me emphasize this bill is fiscally responsible and balances the needs of our 9/11 heroes with fiscal restraints. it is completely paid for. we have achieved this by closing a tax loophole which allows foreign companies to evade u.s.
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taxes. second, we have capped the funding level. capped the number of people who can participate and capped the number of years the program can continue. we have consistently worked to reduce its costs and in the month of july alone we brought the cost of this bill down an additional $3 billion. now let me appeal to my colleagues on the other side of the aisle. i understand that some may have a problem with the offset, even though it is not aimed at u.s. companies and is simply designed to improve with holding of taxesing -- taxes that are legally due. i understand. but i have to ask this, just consider for a moment what we are talking about. balance that tax break against the needs of our 9/11 heroes, needs that are so great, so raw and so obvious. and let our moral obligation to the heroes of 9/11, our obligation, as lincoln said, to care for him who shall have borne the battle, prevail. let us do the honorable thing and vote for this bill. mr. speaker, the choice is simple. i will be voting today for the firefighters, for the police, for the first responders, for
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the survivors of the attacks. i urge every member of the house to do the same. and i want to thank congresswoman maloney, congressman king, the new york delegation, the speaker, the majority leader, the chairman of the various committees, subcommittee chairs and all the organizations, the international association of firefighters and national association of police organizations, for their invaluable support for this bill. mr. speaker, my colleagues, do the right thing, do the moral thing, do the only moral thing, vote for this bill. i yield back. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair will remind all persons in the gallery that they are guests of the house and any manifestation of approval or disapproval of the proceedings is a violation of the rules of the house. the gentleman is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i yield myself
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such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. barton: mr. speaker, this bill presents a sensitive issue with regard -- mr. smith: mr. speaker, this bill presents a sensitive issue with regard to the cleanup efforts at the world trade center site. no doubt, there are many with legitimate claims as a result of their efforts at ground zero. however, this legislation as written creates a huge $8.4 billion slush fund paid for by taxpayers that is open to abuse, fraud and waste. thaws because the bill -- that's because the bill has a 20-year-long fund. the case of the bill's names sake, james zadroga, is indicative of the problems with this bill. rather than finding that detective zadroga's death was due to ground zero dust, the
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medical examiner concluded, quote, it is our unequivocal opinion with certainty beyond doubt that the foreign material in detective zadroga's lungs ask not get there as a result of inhaling dust at the world trade center or elsewhere, end quote. so the bill is deceptive starting with its title. the danger here is not the occasional unsupportive claim in the case of detective james zadroga but the creation of a massive compensation system that will be subject to pervasive problems over the unprecedented 21 years it will be open to claimants. the legislation also vastly extends the geographic scope of the fund to cover, quote, roots of debris removal, end quote. this will result in the potential for a huge number of additional claimants with ten with us connections between their -- tenuous connections between their medical problems
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and ground zero. they can file until the year 2031, an unjustifiable length of time. as ken fineberg, the administer of the b.p. oil spill claims process stated, quote, no latent claims need such an extended date, end quote. additionally, the bill permits those who have settled their lawsuits to reopen their claims and seek additional taxpayer-funded compensation through the 9/11 fund. this is contrary to both the terms of the original 9/11 fund and to normal legal principles regarding final settlements. by greatly expanding the fund's eligibility criteria, these proposed changes will not only increase the cost of the fund but will present more opportunities for fraud and abuse of taxpayers' dollars. also, the bill does little, if anything, to limit the special masters' unbounded authority.
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the amount of discretion given to the special master may have been acceptable under the original 9/11 fund because it was designed to limit claimants with relatively noncontroversial claims as soon as possible. however, this amount of discretion will not work for the 21-year-long fund created by this bill with claimants with injuries with more ambiguous causeation. if nothing more, this will be an open invitation for spur yuss claims. the -- spurius claims. the 9/11 commission was designed to settle the claims once and for all. maybe that fund should be reopened to protect the construction contractors from the financially ruinous litigation they now face. but if we are going to reopen the fund, we should do so in a much more narrow way with far
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less discretion for the special master than is provided for in h.r. 847. it is hard to explain spending billions of additional taxpayer dollars when a special master, ken feinberg, has emphatically stated, that the $1.5 billion in charitable contributions and insurance coverage currently available for distribution is, quote, more than sufficient to pay off eligible claims as well as lawyers' fees and costs, end quote. why does congress continue to overreach and consider taxpayers to be their personal slush fund? there is no excuse for this kind of legislation, and i hope members will want to oppose the bill. mr. speaker, i'll reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york, mr. nadler. mr. nadler: mr. speaker, i now yield one minute to the distinguished chairperson of
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the house rules committee, the gentlelady from new york. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from new york is recognized for one minute. ms. slaughter: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding, and i'm proud to support the men and women who risked their lives for their fellow citizens following the attacks of september 11. on that day in 2001, tens of thousands of americans raced to rescue those injured in the terrorist attacks. in the course of the work that day and the days following they were exposed to dangerous toxins and physical hazards. after giving so much of themselves, many of the firefighters, police officers and bystanders faced serious respiratory, gastrointestinal health problems. while ground zero is hours away from my home in rochester, many asked how we could help. just the other day i have talked to the captain of a niagara falls fire company that broke his leg at ground zero trying to rescue those trapped
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in the rubble. we recently observed the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attack and we can't forget those who risked everything to help those at ground zero. for this reason i support h.r. 847, the compensation fund. and thank you for the time. the speaker pro tempore: the time has expired. the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i'll continue to reserve at this point. we only have one speaker on this side. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. nadler: mr. speaker, i now yield a minute to the gentleman from new york, mr. maffei. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for one minute. mr. maffei: i thank my distinguished colleague from new york. september 11, 2001, the day we'll never forget. many people lost family members and neighbors, but alongside
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the sorrow and loss we witnessed incredible acts of heroism and bravery. thousands of emergency responders and volunteers risked their lives and came to our country's aid when we needed it the most. many of them are my constituents, even though i'm from upstate new york, many came down in the months following and the weeks following. thomas from marietta, new york, was one of the heroes that day. he was working on a police officer on 9/11 then, and he actually trained with james zadroga, who's one of the first nypd officers whose death is attributed to toxic chemicals. on that day, members of congress and members alike, republicans and democrats, pledged to do anything we could, anything we could for the victims, their families and the rescuers who went in after them. we didn't say we would do anything as long as it doesn't cost too much. we didn't say we would do anything as long as there was no chance an undocumented worker could possibly benefit. we didn't say we would do anything as long as it protect
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offshore companies to get away with sheltering their taxes. we said we'd do anything. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman will suspend. members shall heed the gavel. the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: mr. speaker, may i ask how much time remains on each side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas has five minutes. and the gentleman from new york has three minutes. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i'm prepared to close on this side. so at the appropriate time i'll do so. meanwhile, i'll reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. nadler: mr. speaker, i now yield one minute to the gentleman from new york, mr. mcmahon. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. mcmahon: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, mr. chairman. and i want to just be very clear that we should all owe a great debt of gratitude to congress members maloney and nadler from new york on their leadership on this issue. mr. speaker, my district of staton island was particularly
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hard hit from the 9/11 attacks. nearly 300 of my constituents were murdered, including 1/3 of the firefighters killed on that day and sick today are those uniformed and hard-hat wearing heroes, the operating engineers, the laborers, the steelworkers, ironworkers, all the volunteers and residents. when i think about why we need that law i think of marty, a 31-year fy -- nyfd worker. he said he would die without a new lung. and while he received a new lung earlier this year his health continues to suffer. the last time he was here in july to fight for this bill he actually made his condition worse and he continues to recover from that. our thoughts go out to him and his wife, trish, and his daughters. despite their deteriorating health, many like marty have made this trip -- we must pass this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman from texas. mr. mcmahon: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the chair requests that all members respect the gavel. the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i'll yield myself the balance of the time. mr. speaker, this legislation represents an irresponsible overreach and does not contain the protections necessary to safeguard valuable taxpayer dollars from abuse, waste and fraud. ken feinberg, special master of the original 9/11 fund, testified twice before the judiciary committee on this legislation. both times mr. feinberg advocating re-enacting the 9/11 fund but doing so on a much more limited basis than is done in this legislation. why are we ignoring his advice? mr. feinberg stated if the fund is re-enacted it should be for a window of five years, not 21. and that it should be done with, quote, the understanding that there would be no changes
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in the rules and regulations governing the original fund and that the new law would simply be a one-line reaffirmation of the original 9/11 fund, end quote. mr. feinberg warned that, quote, any attempt to modify the statutory provisions and accompanying regulations of the original fund will undercut political consensus, end quote. unfortunately, mr. feinberg's sound advice was ignored thereto. instead, we are considering a bill that creates a fund with unnecessary 21-year-long duration and that it contains special protections for trial lawyers, unnecessarily extends the original fund's eligibility criteria and does not include the protections necessary to safeguard the fund from abuse, waste and fraud. this is another example of congress' insatiable aptute for the taxpayers' -- appetite for
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the taxpayers' hard earned dollars. i ask members to vote no and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. mr. nadler: how much time do i have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york has two minutes. mr. nadler: i yield to the gentlelady from new york, mrs. maloney. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from new york is recognized for two minutes. mrs. maloney: i thank the gentleman for his leadership and for yielding and for his hard work for six years. it took us four years in
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college and six years on this bill. the time to pass the james zadroga 9/11 health and compensation act is now. it is bipartisan, it is patriotic and it is overwhelmingly supported by americans across this country. james zadroga's father is with us today as well as many hardworking men and women who worked on that pile, who selflessly risked their health and their lives to help others. and i thank the new york state afl-cio, the firefighters and fire officers who are here with us today, al hagan and steve cassidy, the police, pat lynch, the laborers, the construction workers, the d.c. 37, luke clark, mike mcentity -- mike
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mcentee. many of you have said, all you want is your health care. an estimated 36,000 americans have received treatment for illnesses as a direct result of 9/11. those suffering come from all of our 50 states, and 428 of the 435 congressional districts nationwide were represented at 9/11. here is a map of locations in florida and in california where health care providers have provided medical services to 9/11 responders. nearly every member of this house of representatives have people that worked there, and they are losing their health. thousands of people lost their lives nine years ago, but thousands and thousands more lost their health. this is not an entitlement. this is a responsibility to
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take care of those who took care of us when our country was attacked. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. mrs. maloney: i, mr. speaker, would like to put in the record this report on 9/11 that outlines the participants from across our country in all of our congressional districts. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mrs. maloney: and the rest of my comments. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. nadler: thank you, mr.
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speaker. i rise in strong support of h.r. 847, the james zadroga compensation act of 2010. this important legislation was reported by the energy and commerce committee with bipartisan support on may 25 by a vote of 33-12. mr. pallone: i'd like to take a moment to thank the bill's sponsors as well as my colleagues from new york on the committee, eliot engel and anthony weiner, for their tireless work on behalf of this legislation. beyond the immediate loss of life on september 11, today thousandses of people are suffering debilitating illnesses from its aftermath. h.r. 847 would establish the world trade center health program, a program to screen, monitor and treat eligible responders and survivors who are suffering from world trade center-related diseases. most commonly, from the massive toxic dust cloud that enveloped lower manhattan. the bill also funds research to improve our understanding of the health effects of the exposures
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over time. federal spending for the w.t.c. health program is capped at $3.2 billion and is fully paid for. the version before the house today is more than $1 billion less expensive than that reported with bipartisan support from the energy and commerce committee. mr. speaker, congress must ensure that the appropriate resources are available to take care of those who risked their own lives to save others on september 11. i urge my colleagues to pass the bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman reserve the balance of his time? mr. pallone: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. barton: thank you. i yield myself five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. barton: and ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. barton: thank you. mr. speaker, i rise in respectful but sincere opposition to the pending bill.
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i have no disrespect for the victims or for the namesake sponsor and his family. but i also have a sincere regard for the united states taxpayer who is going to have to pay for this new entitlement program. the first myth that i want to relate to is, there is the implication that we don't have an existing victims compensation fund. that is simply not true, mr. speaker. 12 days after the attack, back in september of 2001, we passed public law 107-42, the victim compensation fund of 2001. we gave two years or a year and a half for people to submit claims. 97% of the eligible victims or their families filed injury or death claims by december 22,
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2003. of the 2,973 victims, 2,880 of the families filed a claim. the average award for the families of victims actually killed in the attack seanched $2 million -- averaged $2 million per victim. 70 people chose to file lawsuits. 23 eligible families took no action. in addition to death claims, 2,680 injury claims have been filed and processed. the average award for injured victims was nearly $400,000 per injury. overall, this fund has paid out over $7 billion in the last nine years. we also passed a victims of terrorism tax relief act back in 2001 so that the families of the victims would not be subject to federal income taxes for the
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year. the attack and also for the previous year to the attack. we currently have an existing 9/11 benefit program. president obamaed -- requested $150 million for this -- president obama requested $150 million for this budget year. in the years since this program has been in existence, it's paid out $373 million. as of september 30 of last year, of the -- there have been 55,331 first responders in the monitoring and treatment programs that i've just discussed. of those, 44,754 have received an initial exam and 13,000 have been treated for world trade center-related health conditions in the past 12 months alone. so, in point of fact, we have an existing fund that is paid out
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-- that has paid out over $7 billion. we have an ongoing fund of $150 million per year which the republicans support. on top of that we're expected to vote for this new entitlement program which is over $7 billion . my good friend from new jersey said that it's going to save $1 billion over the bill that was reported out of the energy and commerce committee several months ago. what he doesn't tell you is the way they do that is by using a budget gimmick that simply doesn't fund the program in the year 2019. in fiscal year 2018, the amount provided in the bill would be $601 million. in 2019 that drops to $173 million and in fiscal year 2020 there's no funding at all. so, they simply decide that at a date certain they start reducing the amount of money so that they
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can get under their self-imposed budget window. mr. speaker, we want to help the victims of 9/11 in new york city. we certainly want to help the first responders. what we don't want to do is put on the average american taxpayer all around the country $7 billion to $8 billion brand new entitlement program that compensates and health care and medicare rates $140% above the baseline -- 140% above the baseline and reopens some of these lawsuits and some of these cases that have already been solved. so, if you want to help, we're willing to help. but let's use the existing program, let's not create a new program, especially a new entitle am program which we simply cannot afford -- entitlement program which we simply cannot afford at this time. with that, mr. speaker, i want to ask unanimous consent that mr. shimkus, the ranking member of the health subcommittee, be
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given the opportunity to control the balance of the energy and commerce minority's time. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. time has expired. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. pallone: thank you, mr. speaker. at this time i'd yield two minutes to the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, who has been a champion on this legislation and also managed it through the rules committee yesterday. mr. engel. mr. engel: i thank my friend from new jersey -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my friend from new jersey and i rise in strong support of this bill. you know, i'm going to try to speak from the heart. those of us who represent districts around -- in and around new york city, we all had constituents who died in 9/11. we have friends who died at 9/11. remember after 9/11, how we all banded together as americans? remember singing "god bless america" on the steps of the
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capitol? remember how it didn't matter if you were democrat or republican, we were all americans that day and we should still be all americans, above and beyond anything else? i remember going the friday after the tuesday attack with president bush at ground zero where he stood with a bull horn and a fireman with him and pledged that there would be help coming from the federal government. and all we're asking now is that these people who got sick, who were selfless, who didn't think of themselves, who responded, who only wanted to try to help other people, they're now getting sick and they're now dying and now they need our help. and you know, it's not true, my friends, to say, well, i'm for helping these people, but i'm not for this bill. the bottom line is this. if you want to help the heroes of 9/11 and the first responders, you vote yes on the bill. if you don't want to help them and you want to make excuses, you vote no on the bill.
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it's simple as that. yes or no. yes or no. do we help the people that need our help now, who responded on 9/11 when government officials told them that the air was clean and it was ok to go down to ground zero and they went there? this is not a new york problem or a new jersey problem or a connecticut problem. this is an american problem. people are sick from 431 districts of the 435 districts and who are we to turn our backs on them now. the speaker pro tempore: time has expired. mr. engel: i beg my friends on both sides of the aisle. this is bipartisan, we're all americans. voyes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois -- vote yes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois. mr. shimkus: i'd like to recognize and yield five minutes to the gentleman from new york, mr. king. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for five minutes. mr. king: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise in support
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of h.r. 47 in strong support of this. at the outset, let me commend my colleagues, carolyn maloney and jerry nadlerer, for the truly outstanding job they've done for all these years and four their candor and being there quht tough decisions had to be made. let me also thank former congressman for the work he did on this bill as well. let me commend the leadership in both parties. i commend the democratic leadership for bringing this back up for majority vote. i commend them for it. i know it's been tough. tough decisions have had to be made and they made them. i also thank the leadership of the republican party, for working with us and a number of to us make sure that there would be a fair and open vote here today and debate. so i thank them for that. let me also say that all of us know this has been a long and torch white house route, to get this bill to the house floor today. during that time, there's been frustrations, tempers have flared but also, and probably most importantly, people have died. and that's what we have to keep in mind. this is a real human issue. we have people sitting here in
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the gallery today, many have breathing problems, their lungs, poisonous toxins in their blood stream. this is a real human issue. i share some of the concerns that republicans have regarding the funding stream, how this is going to be paid for. but the fact is, this is a good bill. we cannot allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good. it's more important to me, i believe, that we take care of those who are truly in need and we focus -- look at the bill in full perspective and full view and keep that in mind. keep in mind the victims. the men and women who went to ground zero on september 11 and stayed there for the days, weekas and months afterwards and they were on that pile and now are suffering the most horrible diseases. disease, illnesses which we see in our districts when we meet these people. we see them in the store, we see them at ball games. we see them at church. so this again is for real. and so, let's today try to have the debate as we are in a very civil way. let's realize there are honest
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differences of opinion on both sides but the people don't have the luxury of waiting another two years or three years or four years. and i know that people on the republican side have spoken about various programs that are available. the fact is, this is such a unique type of disaster. the illnesses that have come from ground zero are very unique to ground zero, unfortunately. these are 9/11-type illnesses. the rarest types of cancer, the rarest types of blood disorders. it's essential that we have a permanent registry so we will know exactly how these illnesses be treated so those in the other 430 districts around the country who could be suffering from a cough which a doctor may think is an innocent cough will realize it's a 9/11 caufment those who have symptoms that may otherwise be undetected, they may not realize how significant they are and directly realitied -- related to 9/11. as far as whether or not this is entitlement or whatever term we want to use, the fact is, when it came to nuclear work, federal
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nuclear workers, we set up the exact same type program. call it indictment if you will but that program was set -- call it entitlement if you will. as far as the issue of the victims compensation fund and all those who were compensated, the fact is, the people we are talking about today, the victims we are talking about today, were people who didn't realize their illness so after the deadline hex pired, people who today are just -- ex -- had expired, people who today are just finding out about the illness, it's in their blood stream, it's in their lungs. back in 2003 when this program closed, virtually no one, virtually no one knew the extent of the illnesses and diseases that would stem from september 11. the fact is, they are there. and they're getting worse and worse. as you know, i see congressman weaver just walked in, we haven't had the highest things to say about each other on the floor, we're standing together on the bill today. as he points out, the one thing
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we can be certain of is that the number of those who are entitled to take part in this program today, that number is going to diminish. it's going to diminish because they're dying one by one. let's keep that in mind. again, it goes to the heart of what we should be as a congress, what we should be as democrats and republicans, what we should be as americans and those of us, we all stood together on september 11 and nine years have gone by and to many people it's something that happened a long time ago but for those who are suffering today, it's something they live with every moment. i urge everyone to make this as much of a bipartisan vote as possible, send a message to the country, send a message to the world and send a message to victims that they are not forgotten and we're not giving them any charity. we're not giving them anything. we're just rewarding them for what they're entitled to receive. so with that i urge adoption of 847 and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the chair would like to remind all members that remarks in debate may not call attention to visiters in the gallery. the chair recognizes the
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gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: mr. speaker, i now yield one minute to the gentleman from new york, mr. israel. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for one minute. mr. israel: i thank the gentleman. mr. speaker, in the weeks after 9/11, i remember colleagues from throughout the congress approaching those of us who suffered loss and who lost constituents saying what can i do to help. what do you need? how can i assist? today, we're taking you up on your offer. a few weeks ago we commemorated the ninth anniversary of 9/11, and many people said the right prayers and they gave the right speeches, but now it's time to do the right thing. to the gentleman and the gentlewomen from louisiana, when the hurricane swept through, new yorkers paid to rebuild louisiana. to the gentlemen and gentlewomen, when the fires burned, people ponied up to help california. to the gentlemen talked today,
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when the hurricane swept texas, new yorkers helped foot the bill. and i want to be able to say to those gentlemen and those gentlewomen, when the terrorists came to new york you were there for us. not only them but the 11,000 people who are suffering today. they are not just new yorkers. they are americans living in your districts. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new jersey. new jersey. mr. pallone: at this time i'd yield one minute to the gentleman from new york, mr. hall. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for one minute. and the chair would ask all members to heed the gavel. mr. hall: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, mr. chairman, for yielding. i rise in strong support of h.r. 847, the james zadroga
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9/11 health and compensation act. we cannot talk about the 9/11 attacks without remembering the first responders who answered the call that day and safeguard us here every day. police officers, firefighters, e.m.t.'s and ordinary american citizens rushed into crumbling buildings and then worked countless hours in the days and weeks that followed. and now more than nine years later many of those courageous first responders are suffering from serious illnesses caused by inhaling toxic fumes and particles in air that they were told was clear and safe to breathe. it is our patriotic duty to protect those who sacrificed for their fellow americans. this is not a partisan issue. this is an issue of responsibility. many of my constituents lost loved ones on that day, spent months combing through the rubble for remains and are now suffering health problems as a result. let's honor those who selflessly returned to ground zero to save those they did not know by standing together
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through passing this bill and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from illinois. mr. shimkus: i'd like to reserve my time, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: continues to reserve. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: i yield now to the gentleman from new york, mr. meeks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for one minute. mr. meeks: this is the united states house of representatives . the united states of america. this is an institution that i'm proud to be a member of and there comes a point in time in our lives when we just simply must do the right thing, keeping our priorities straight. this is a political body, but this is not a political issue. it should not be. it was not political when every man and woman went out to sacrifice their own lives, in
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essence, on 9/11. they went out there not because they were democrats or republicans, black or white, they're from here or there. they went out because this is the united states of america. this is the people's house. there comes a time for us not to be political but to take care of our own and that's what this is all about. our own is sick. our own is dying. and we need to come to their aid and come to their aid now. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from illinois. mr. shimkus: i'd like to reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: mr. speaker, can i just ask the gentleman from illinois if he has any additional speakers. i don't want to have them all -- mr. shimkus: if the gentleman will yield? mr. pallone: i'll yield. mr. shimkus: i don't think there's any more. i'd like to finish. mr. pallone: thank you. i yield now to the gentlewoman from new york, ms. velazquez.
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the speaker pro tempore: more -- for how many minutes? mr. pallone: 1 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. ms. velazquez: i want to thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, on 9/11 and in the weeks that followed, the best of america was on display. neighborhoods came together to comfort and support one another. communities in every corner of the country rallied together. in new york city our brave first responders answered the call vehemently putting their lives at risk to protect the rest of us. over the last nine years, the full scope of this tragedy's health effects has become increasingly clear. firefighters, police officers, e.m.t.'s and rescue workers are all suffering respiratory problems. even schoolchildren and those who work in the area have exhibited health problems.
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it is estimated that 36,000 people have sought treatment after being exposed to the toxic dust at the world trade center's site. it is not just new yorkers who are affected. 10,000 people traveled from every state of the union, including puerto rico and the territories, to assist in the aftermath of these attacks. like all america, these here roast were a -- heroes were a diverse group, representing every age, religion and even status. no one asked for their citizenship status when they stepped in to help. they were all there, and they were all heroes. this legislation will provide medi benefits for all those suffering from the toxins they were exposed to. this is the right thing to do. these brave individuals cast aside their own safety to assist their fellow humans.
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i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from illinois. mr. shimkus: i still reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: i yield to another champion of this bill from our committee, the gentleman from new york, mr. weiner. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mr. weiner: you know, i heard some people describe this bill as an entitlement bill as if people are lining up to get this benefit. like someone would really want to be on the list of people eligible to get the money that's eligible under this bill to get the health care. the idea that someone would volunteer, be eager to get the benefits that in order to get them you have to have a stew of toxic dust in your lungs, so much that you can't breathe normally and you cough and when you hear that 9/11 cough in new york, everyone will know. everyone knows it. the idea that it's open-ended, no, it's a pretty closed ended
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program in the most final sense of the word in that many people that have the illnesses that we're trying to treat with this legislation are dying. there are people in this chamber who are watching these proceedings and those that are home who once upon the time were the most vigorous, fit people imaginable and it was because of that vigor and fitness that they went down to ground zero on september 11. they didn't ask to be chosen. they didn't fill out a form. they didn't even wear protective gear. they went down because they felt it was their obligation. they didn't just come from lower manhattan. they didn't just come from new york. as i've said many times, if you were in new york the days after september 11, the streets were clogged with parked ambulances and fire trucks and cars. every license plate imaginable. those people aren't asking for anything beyond just being able to cure the diseases that they got because they served. that's what this is about.
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you know, my colleagues that oppose this, yeah, i imagine there's 100 different ways you can describe it and you look at line 7 and page 6 and come up with some reason to be against it. but i ask my colleagues to take a step back and every single one of us on september 11 stood up in our districts and said we're not going to forget the commitment that we made that day. well, this is the moment. you can't stand up in your district on september 11 and say you won't forget and have a red light next to your name today. it just doesn't wash. this is the day we repay our debts. you want to call it an entitlement bill, ok. they are entitled. they're entitled to our care, they're entitled to our respect, they're entitled to the health care that they need, and they're entitled to a yes vote today. let's give it to them. i yield back my time.
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the speaker pro tempore: the chair will remind all persons in the gallery that they are here as guests of the house and that any manifestation of approval or disapproval of the proceedings is in violation of the rules of the house. the gentleman from illinois. mr. shimkus: thank you, mr. speaker. may i ask for how much time remains and how many speakers that my friend from new jersey has? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois has five minutes, and the gentleman from new jersey has 4 1/2 minutes. mr. pallone: at this point i'll close myself unless someone else down comes. so if you'd like to close on our energy and commerce time, then i'll follow you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized. mr. shimkus: mr. speaker, i yield myself the balance of the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. shimkus: thank you, mr. speaker. a great friend from both sides of the aisle, our great friends from new york, it's been an interesting battle, one that is very tough to be engaged in. they're right. you know, the folks who
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responded need care. they need to be supported, and that's what we think we've been doing. you know, when we started marking up this bill, there's $130 million in the fund that was still there cash on hand. the president in his budget said we can do better than that. we need $150 million. and so that started the process of us deciding what did we need to do and how did we need to do it. especially from funding -- from the funding perspective. now, the entitlement debate is an interesting one to get involved in. i'm a military veteran. i served actively for 5 1/2 years. i served another 23 in the reserves. the first line responders are heroes but our men and women in uniform in afghanistan are men and women -- there are men and
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women in iraq, there are men and women around the world, they don't have an entitlement program. they go through the regular authorization process. they go through the appropriation process. and you know what, when we go into the political battle, which we're coming upon, people attack folks about whether they're authorizing enough money or whether they're spending enough money. this is what happens here. and so that's -- we can spend any way we want, but that's part of our debate. do you use the same process to authorize funding to fight for the money and spend the money? and we would say we should use the same category as we do with our military veterans. we should use the same process for our active military forces. again, the president wanted
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$150 million. that's what we agreed upon and that's the amendment we authorized in the markup bill. and some would argue and say, gosh, there must be nothing being done. nothing's being done. we know that's not true. c.d.c. has been before the committee twice saying they have a list. they do have a registry. they're following them. in fact, as of september 30, the world trade center program has enrolled 55,331 responders. 55,331 responders in the program now. it's not like we're not doing anything. there's other issues with the bill. the -- one of the concerns is
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is when the new health care law cuts money to hospitals under part a, about $150 billion in payments, they say, guess what, 10% of all hospitals are going to close. that's under the new health care bill and it's rural hospitals that are the target under the new health care law. well, this provides more money under medicare to new york city hospitals at 140% of medicare payments. . we overwhelm pay 70% of medicare payment in this country as a whole, but under this law, we are going to provide new york hospitals 140e% of medicare costs -- 140% of medicare costs. so there are real issues of concern here. and it's unfortunate. because it didn't have to be this way. all we ask for the number that president obama thought was
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good. he said, 150 million. we said fine. 20 million more than what the money was still in the fund at the time. we are also saying, they are all heroes. the netch responders are hero -- the 9/11 spoppeders are heroes. let's -- responders are heroes. let's treat them like our veterans and active military. why should we have a double standard? can't we fight for authorizations on an annual basis like we do for our active military and veterans? of course we can. so with that, mr. speaker, again, unfortunate we are in this position. we could have had a strong bipartisan bill. we don't have that. people will cast their votes and they will be held accountable. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from nming new jersey. mr. pallone: thank you.
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at this time i'd like to yield to the speaker of the house, one minute and point out that if it wasn't for her efforts, we would not be here today moving this legislation. the speaker: i thank the gentleman. but i in turn want to salute congressman peter king, congress woman carol lynn maloney and the entire bipartisan new york delegation for giving us this opportunity today to do what is right and fair and just. mr. speaker, in observance of 9/11 earlier this month, we stood on the steps of the capitol, democrats and republicans alike, to honor the memory that we lost that day. as we were standing there i was thinking back to my first visit to ground zero. when you went there at that time following the tragedy, you knew that when you stepped there, you were walking on sacred ground.
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there was an incredible silence as the workers feverishly, feverishly tried to retrieve the remains of those who were lost and just repair the damage that was done, to clear, to clear the wreckage. no pictures were allowed in recognition that we were on sacred ground. no photographs were allowed. and of course silence was generally observed. that those who were working could hear each other as they quietly went about their very, very sad assignment. they and those who rushed to the scene in real time when it happened, risked their lives and their health to do so.
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they didn't ask any questions. is anybody going to take care of me? they were there to help. again, back to the steps of the capitol when we were standing there earlier this month, i'm sure mr. king and congresswoman maloney, congressman king and others, recall that many signs went up in the crowd gathered there. it said, remember us next week. that was in anticipation that the bill might come up the following week. it's another week later. we are here today to say that we do remember you this week. we remember what you did at the time. it wasn't only your sacrifice. it's the sacrifice of your families, of your health and the impact that that has on your families. you are community to new york.
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the impact it has on the community. and also the impact on our conscience to do what is right by those who we call heroes and we want to treat as such. today we remember all the heroes of 9/11. we praise the strength of thousands of firefighters, rescue workers, first responders, and medical personnel to turn tragedy into inspiration and gave themselves -- of themselves to help a city and our nation rebuild. we promised to help those who spent days, weeks, and months doing hard work, our government and the american people expected them to do in the recovery effort. they went above and beyond the call of duty. we all know that. we all looked in frustration to think if only we could help. but they were there, it was
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emotional. it was professional. and we pledge to do everything in our power to ensure that their health and well-being would be taken care of. we did not want them to be unsung heroes. we want them to be recognized heroes. today we are here to honor that pledge. it's long overdue. but nonetheless we are here to do right by these workers and vote for the james zadroga 9/11 health and compensation act. words of course are inadequate to recognize and honor the bravery and courage of these brave americans, but by this act of congress, more than words, but by this act of congress we can truly express our gratitude to the ordinary men and women, ordinary -- no, extraordinary
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men and women who took extraordinary action at that time. named for officer james zadroga, a hero of new york police department, who died from respiratory disease contracted during the ground zero recovery effort, this legislation will help those who jeopardized their health to rescue others, to secure necessary medical treatment, especially to the unique exposures suffered at ground zero. which are real. and the victims' families and survivors can obtain compensation for their losses to a reopened netch victims compensation fund. it is fully paid for. this legislation does not increase the deficit. it is the least we can do for those who answer the call of duty and continue to suffer the ill health effects of their service. on september, 9/11, all
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americans were shocked by the horrified images. of terror and destruction. yet, in the aftermath of that dark day, we responded in the best possible way, the best way americans can. with resolve, with courage, with unity, and with hope for a better future. so many of us couldn't be at the scene ourselves, we all were willing to help people from all over were trying to send assistance. those who did, though, did not do so for recognition or accolades or awards or medals. they did it because their fellow americans were in need. and those acts they became heroes. the american people are looking to us to cast a vote that will allow these heroes to live out their lives with health and happiness. again, i want to commend congresswoman carolyn maloney,
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congressman jerry nadler, congressman peter king, thank you, peter, for their efforts to bring this bipartisan bill to the floor. we are all inspired by the firefighters and first responders who have advocated so hard and so long on behalf of the their fellow heroes and on i'm so pleased that so many of them are with us today to help us make this historic decision. we must now join together to provide this critical assistance. we must vote aye for the health and compensation act. we must do so in a strong, bipartisan manner. i thank our colleagues for the personal involvement that they have take yep in this. at times it has been emotional. there's a lot of passion in this issue. but this bill is a very dispassionate response to the
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needs of our heroes. let's get a great big vote for it today. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: mr. speaker, can i inquire how much time remains? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey has 3 1/2 minutes. mr. pallone: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. pallone: i have heard members on the other side of the aisle talk about this as a entitlement program. i would want to stress it's not a entitlement program. it's not a budget gimmick. the program sunsets in 10 years. the funding is capped. enrollment is capped. the population can't grow beyond the enrollment cap in the bill. i hear from the opponents all about money. how much money is going to new york hospitals. i want to stress that this isn't
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really about who is going to pay for somebody's health insurance. one of the centers where people go for treatment is in my home state of new jersey in my district of rutgers, my understanding is many if not most of the people who go there actually have health insurance. the problem is that we are creating these septemberers and we want to make sure that they are -- centers and we want to make sure they are there for a long time because they serve a very important purpose. people go there because they have particularly diseases that come from the world trade center attack that can't be treated at other locations. even if they go to their doctor, they end up coming here because they know how to treat -- get the specialty care that they need. they also provide research. many of these people don't contact the diseases until later in life. i think as time goes on we are going to see, unfortunately, even more problems. at these centers they do the research to look and see what kind of treatment might be necessary as more and more people, unfortunately, come down with the diseases that resulted
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from the world trade center attack. so i know there's a lot of talk about money from the other side and i don't mean to say that money isn't important, but i want people to understand, i want everyone to understand, this is not really about money. this is really about having a specialized program where people can be treated who sacrificed everything for america. and these centers need to be here. they need to be here a long time from now even when there aren't people that are going to be down here and asking that this program continue. and that's why this program has to be set up in this fashion today. it has to be properly funded. it has to be available for anyone who suffers any kind of disorder from this world trade center attack. so with that, mr. speaker, i would ask strongly -- do i have any additional time, mr. speaker? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has a minute remaying. mr. pallone: i yield that to the gentlewoman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from texas is
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recognized. ms. jackson lee: i thank the gentleman very much. i have traveled this journey with all of you and congresswoman maloney i want the -- wanted to come to the floor and thank you. along with the chair persons of the energy and commerce and judiciary committee for never giving up. i think it is important to note that this bill will cover pennsylvania, the pentagon, and new york. and for those of us who listened to the families and the witnesseser or the first responders -- witnesses or the first responders themselves who saw the pain and particularly those who already lost their lives, i think that this is a major step, a balance, putting this in a system and structure that has oversight, that provides ongoing care, and provides for the coverage of those who, to this date, have suffered without coverage and comfort. so i rise to support this legislation and i am very glad that the judiciary committee and
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energy and commerce continue to work even when we were thwarted an rejected. we are now back with our hope -- i hope the right approach, bipartisan approach, and i ask all of my colleagues to ask the question what they would want to do for 9/11 responders and that is vote yes. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
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the speaker pro tempore: the chair will receive a message. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the president of the united states. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: mr. secretary. the secretary: i am directed by the president of the united states to deliver to the house of representatives a message in writing. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york, mr. rangel, will control five minutes.
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the gentleman from louisiana, mr. boustany, will control five minutes. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. rangel: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to yield to the gentleman from new jersey for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. pascrell: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, many folks from new jersey, both first responders and workers went to new york after this tragedy. there's no question that when you look at the records that there were people from all 50 states in lower manhattan on 9/11 and after 9/11. there are 435 congressional districts, and 430 of them were
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represented by the names of constituents on the world trade center health registry. but you don't need that. you need to look at the two reports from mount sinai. great hospital in new york city. to see the number of people that went to that hospital who worked on that pile even after they were given the all clear signal by the government, not self-imposed. what in god's name are we doing to ourselves and arguing amongst ourselves when we know that this is the right thing to do? get out of the bureaucracy nightmare. let's do something together for a change. the only thing we have to show for it is bickering over the last two years and what did that bring us? these folks deserve our help and they deserve it now. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
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mr. pascrell: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana, mr. boustany. mr. boustany: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks, and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. boustany: mr. speaker, everyone in this chamber salutes the heroic actions of those first responders and ordinary citizens who put sacrifice over self in responding to the tragic events of 9/11. in the wake of unspeakable tragedy in new york city, at the pentagon and in pennsylvania we also saw america at its best. now, we have already heard considerable debate today, passionate debate about the new health care entitlement that this bill would create. and i think reasonable people can disagree about whether that particular program, that particular entitlement is appropriate. but i want to focus my remarks on the other part of this bill
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and on the unfortunate decision of our friends in the majority to pay for this legislation with a highly controversial tax increase on employers that our economy and our work force simply cannot afford. mr. speaker, the bill would impose a $7.4 billion tax hike on u.s. businesses that happen to be headquartered overseas but that create good, high-paying american jobs right here at home in communities across this great country. these insourcing companies provide significant employment in the united states with many of these jobs in the manufacturing sector. this tax increase will make it less attractive for many of these insourcing companies to initiate or expand operations here in the united states, potentially encouraging them to ship these jobs overseas. with the unemployment rate hovering near 10% and businesses across the country
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continuing to struggle to meet payroll, now is the worst possible time for a tax hike on employers that will cost us more jobs. this is not the first time house democrats have tried to enact this particular tax hike, and it probably won't be the last. that's because the senate, even senate democrats continue to reject it since it would not only cost jobs but also violate our international treaty obligations. even the obama administration's own treasury department has testified before the house ways and means committee that has concerns, i quote, it has concerns about the specifics of this provision and whether it it will override many of our income tax treaties. mr. speaker, all of us, all of us in this chamber recognizes the hardships experienced by those brave americans in response to the events of 9/11, but the tax increase on employers that will cost other
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americans their jobs is not the answer. we could have done this in a bipartisan way, but it's unfortunate we're not there today. i urge my colleagues to reject this harmful, misguided tax increase, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york, mr. rangel. mr. rangel: mr. speaker, i yield myself one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. rangel: this is not a tax question. this is a moral question. this is one of the most serious abuses that we have in the tax code. it's come before this body before, and it has been supported for sound tax reasons. we're here today because we're given the opportunity by mrs. maloney and mr. nadler and the people of the state of new york to bring this before the house with the concept -- support of the speaker of the house. we had hoped so badly that this bipartisan issue would get a bipartisan vote.
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we have an opportunity to say thank you, not for those people who are jobless and helpless but for those people who gave up their lives, their families that are surviving and those heroes that came to the site, came to the pile and exposed themselves to these threatening diseases, and we have a chance to not talk about loopholes we have in our tax code but loopholes that we have in the hearts of people that want to say thank you to these brave men and women. all over the country people came and they didn't thank new yorkers, they thanked people who cared for the people of the united states of america. we really hope everyone gets a chance to salute it by saluting these people to be an example for americans when anybody attacks us. i thank the -- i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from louisiana, mr. boustany. mr. boustany: mr. speaker, i am
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in stranger to tragedies. but you know, this is being presented on the other side as an either-or proposition. the bottom line is we could have done better. we could have done better, and i am deeply concerned who -- for those who will lose their jobs. don't take my word for it. i have three letters in here that i want to enter into the record. i ask unanimous consent to enter this in the record. one is from the organization of national investment. the second from the u.s. chamber of commerce. and the third from the national foreign trade council all of which highlight the potential of significant job loss. and so as a physician, i can say one of the first maxims i always follow is first do no harm. we could have done better, mr. speaker. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. mr. rangel: i have one
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remaining speaker. i want to make certain that the minority is recognized for closing. mr. boustany: i have no other speakers. after your speaker -- are you the final -- you have one other besides yourself? mr. rangel: yes. i have one other speaker to close. mr. boustany: to close. mr. rangel: yes, to close. mr. boustany: you're prepared to close? mr. rangel: i'm prepared to close. mr. boustany: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. mr. rangel: before i recognize the next speaker, i just like to say when voters get an opportunity to ask the question , and what did you do to help these people who've given so much of their lives to this cause that you just won't have to say you just saved jobs through an abusive tax provision. our country wants to say thank you. certainly our new york delegation in congress. one of our members felt this strongly.
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he felt it as an american but he felt it as a relative that had lost so much in this attack on the united states of america . for purposes of closing, mr. speaker, i recognize joseph crowley from new york. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york, mr. crowley, is recognized. mr. crowley: i thank my friend from new york, mr. rangel, for yielding me this time. i rise in strong support of this bill. i'd like to thank those who are here today who served our nation so nobly on 9/11 and the days following. we thank you for your bravery and for your service. it has been nine years since the terrorist attack that took the lives of close to 3,000 of our fellow americans. over those years, speeches have been offered and medals have been awarded and promises have been made. promises have been made and yet not fulfilled all regarding our 9/11 heroes. but nine years later the most important commitment and tribute remains to be
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fulfilled. the first responders, the first rebuilders and the residents who risked their lives at ground zero are still waiting for much-needed health care services. these are the heroes who went through the broken glass and debris and, yes, through human remains. these are the heroes who are urged by our federal officials, return to life as you usual, in downtown new york because, and i quote, the air is safe. well, the government was wrong. the air was not safe, and now many, too many are suffering as a result. today, we once again have the opportunity to honor our commitment that we made to those who answered the call to service. by passing the james zadroga 9/11 health and compensation act, we will provide critical health care service to those who stood up for america.
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many of you know my cousin, john moran, died on september 11. many in the gallery above us knew my cousin, john. and as i mentioned back in july, his last known words to his driver that day were, let me off here. i'm going to try to make a difference. here was world trade center tower number two. john died with honor and in service to his country. and would have wanted it no other way. but john, like the others who perished that day, would also want us to know that he would want the victims and the heroes of 9/11 who survived not to be forgotten. we don't need all of our colleagues' votes. what we need is your respect for the victims, for the families, for the survivors, and for one hour and for one
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day and with one vote do not what is politically correct but do what is patriotically correct and vote for this bill. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: all time for debate has expired. pursuant to house resolution 1674, the previous question is ordered on the bill as amended. the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. third reading. the clerk: a bill to amend the public health service act to extend and improve protections and services to individuals directly impacted by the terrorist attack in new york city on september 11, 2001, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? >> mr. speaker, i have a motion to recommit at the desk. the speaker pro tempore: is the gentleman opposed to the bill?
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mr. lee: in its current form. >> i reserve a point of order. the speaker pro tempore: point of order is reserved. the clerk will report. the clerk: mr. lee of new york moves to recommit the bill, h.r. 847 to the committee on energy and commerce with instructions to report the same back to the house forthwith -- mr. lee: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to dispense with the reading. >> i object. the clerk: in subparagraph a of section 3312-c-1 of the public health service act as added by section 101 of the bill, strike the payment rates that would apply to the provision of such treatment and services by the facility under the federal employees compensation act and insert payment rates equal to the payment rates for similar services under parts a and b of title 18 of the social security act. strike title 3 and insert the
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following and make such changes to the table of contents in section 1-b as may be necessary. title 3, repeal of certain spending provisions and patient protection and affordable care act. section 301, repeals. a, in general. the following provisions are hereby repealed. one, subsections a, b, c, g, h, i, j, k, l and m of section 1899-a of the social security act relating to independent payment advisory board and subsections b and c of section 3403 of the patient protection and affordable care act. and the amendments made by such subsections. two, section 4002 of such act relating to the prevention and public health fund. three, subsections a, b, c, d of section 6301 of such act and the amendments made by such
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subsections relating to patient-centered outcomes research. four, section 10502 of such act relating to improving infrastructure of a single health care facility. b, conforming amendments. in the table of contents in section 101 of the patient protection and affordable care act, strike the items relating to sections 3403, 4002 and 10502. at the end of the bill add the following new title and make such changes to the table of contents in section 1-b as may be necessary. title 5, enacting real medical liability reform. section 501, encouraging speedy resolution of claims. the time for the commencement of a health care lawsuit shall be three years after the date of manifestation of injury or one year after the claimant discovers or through the use of reasonable diligence should
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have discovered the injury, whichcals ever occurs first. in -- whichever occurs first. in no event shall it exceed three years after the date of manifestation of injury and was told for any of the following -- unless told for any of the following -- one, upon proof of fouad, two intentional concealment or third body which has no purpose in the person of the injured person. . except that actions by a minor under the full age of 6 years shall be commenced with three years of manifestation of injury or prior to the minor's 8th birthday whichever provides a longer period. such time limitations shall be told for minors for any period during which a parent or guardian and a health care provider or health care organization have committed fraud or collusion in the failure to bring an action on behalf of the injured minor.
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section 502, compensating patient injury. a, unlimited amount of damages for actual economic losses in health care lawsuits, and any health care lawsuit nothing in this title shall limit a claimant's recovery of the full amount of the available economic damages. notwithstanding the limitation in subsection b. b, additional noneconomic damages. in any health care lawsuit the amount of noneconomic damages if available may be as much as $250,000, regardless of the number of parties against whom the action is brought or the number of separate claims or actions brought with respect to the same injury. c, no discount of award for noneconomic damages. for purposes of applying the limitation in subsection b, future noneconomic damages shall not be discounted to present value. the jury should not be informed about the maximum award for noneconomic damages.
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an award for noneconomic damages in excess of $250,000 shall be reduced to either before the entry of judgment or by amendment of the judgment after entry of judgment and such reduction shall be made before accounting for any other reduction in damages required by law. as separate awards are rendered for past or future noneconomic damages and the combined awards exceed $250,000, the future noneconomic damages shall be reduced first. d, fair share rule. in any health care lawsuit, each party shall be libel for that party's several share of any damages only and not for the share of any other person. each party shall be libel only for the amount of damages allocated to such party in direction proportion to such party's percentage of responsibility. whenever a judgment of liability is rendered as to any party, a separate judgment shall be
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rendered against such party for the amount allocated to such party. for purposes of this section, the trier of fact shall determine the proportion of responsibility of each party for the claimant's harm. section 503, maximizing patient recovery. a, court supervision of share of damages actually paid to claimants. and any health care lawsuit the court shall supervise the arrangements for payments of damages. to protect against conflicts of interest that may have the effect of reducing the amount of damages awarded that are actually paid to claimants. in particular, in any health care lawsuit in which the attorney for a party claims financial stake in the outcome by virtue of a contingent fee, the court shall have the power to restrict the payment of a claimant's damage recovery to such alternative and redirect such damages to the interest of justice and principles of equity. in no event shall the total of
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all contingent fees for representing claimants in health care lawsuit exceed the following limits. one, 40% of the first $50,000 recovered by the claimants. two, 33 1/3% of the next $50,000 recovered by the claimants. three, 25% of the next $500,000 recovered by the claimants. four, 15% of any amount by which the recovery of the claimants is in excess of $600,000. b, applicability. the limitations in this section shall apply whether the recovery is by judgment, settlement, mediation, arbitration, or any other form of alternative dispute resolution. in the health care lawsuit involving a minor or incompetent person, the court retains the authority to authorize or approve a fee that is less than the maximum permitted under this section. the requirement for court supervision in the first two sentences of subsection a
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applies only in civil actions. section 504, additional health benefits. in any health care lawsuit involving injury or wrongful death, any party may introduce evidence of collateral source benefits. if a party elects to introduce such evidence, any opposing party may introduce evidence of any amount paid or contributed or reasonably likely to be paid or contributed in the future by or on behalf of the opposing party to secure the right to such collateral source benefits. no provider of collateral source benefits shall recover any amount against the claimant or receive any lean or credit against the claimant's recovery or be equitably or legally sub -- sub progated to the right of a claintant involving injury or wrongful debt that. applies to any health care lawsuit that is settled. this section shall not apply to section 1862-b or section 1902-a
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25 of the social security act. section 505, punitive damages. a, in general, punitive damages may otherwise permitted by applicable state or federal law be awarded against any person in the health care lawsuit only if it is proven by clear and convincing evidence that such person acted with malicious intent to injure the claimant or that such person deliberately failed to avoid unnecessary injury that such person knew the claimant was substantially certain to suffer. and any health care lawsuit where no judgment for compensatory damages is rendered against such person, no punitive damages may be awarded with respect to the claimant of such lawsuit. no demand for punitive damages shall be included in a health care lawsuit as initially filed. the court may allow a claimant to file an amendment pleading for punitive damages, only upon a motion by a claimant and after finding by the court. upon review of supporting and
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opposing affidavits, or after a hearing after weighing the evidence that the claimant has established by substantial probability that the claimant will prevail and the claim for punitive damages. at the request of any party in the health care lawsuit, the trier of fact shall consider in a separate proceeding, one, whether punitive damages are to be awarded in the amount of such award and, two, the amount of punitive damages following a determination of punitive liability. if a separate proceeding is requested, evidence relevant only to the claim for punitive damages as determined by applicable state law shall be inadmissible in any proceeding to determine whether compensatory damages are to be awarded. b, determining the amount of punitive damages. one, factors considered, in determining the amount of punitive damages if awarded any health care lawsuit, the trier
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of fact shall consider only the following. a, the severity of the harm caused by the conduct of such party. b, the duration of the conduct or any concealment of it by such party. c, the profitablity of the conduct of such party. d, the number of products sold or medical procedures rendered for compensation as the case may be by such party of the kind causing the harm complained of by the claimant. e, any criminal penalties imposed on such party as a result of the conduct complained of by the claimant and d, -- f, the amount of any civil fines assessed against such party as a result of the conduct complained of by the claimant. two, maximum award. the amount of punitive damages if awarded in a health care lawsuit may be as much as $250,000 or as much as two times the amount of economic damages awarded, which ever is greater. the jury shall not be informed
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of this limitation. section 506, authorization of payment of future damages to complainants and health care lawsuits. a, in general, in any health care lawsuit if an award of future damages without reduction to present value equallying or exceeding $550,000 is made against a party with sufficient insurance or other assets to fund a periodic payment of such a judgment, the court shall, at the request of any party, enter a judgment ordering that the future damages be paid by periodic payments. and any health care lawsuit the court may be guided by the uniformed periodic payment of judgments act promulgated by the national conference of commissioners on uniform state laws. b, applicability. the section applies to all actions which have not been first set for trial or retrial before the effective date of this title. section 507, definitions.
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in this title, one, alternative dispute resolution system, the term alternative dispute resolution system or a.d.r. means a system that provides for the resolution of health care lawsuits in a manner other than through a civil action brought in a state or federal court. two, claimant, the term claimant means any person who brings a health care lawsuit, including a person who asserts or claims a right to legal or equitable contribution, indemocratity, or subrogation arising out of the health care liability claim or action, and any person on whose behalf of such a claim is asserted or such an action is brought whether diseased, incompetent, or a minor. three, collateral source benefits. the term collateral source benefits means any amount paid or reasonably likely to be paid in the future to or on behalf of the claimant or any service, product, or other benefit
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provided or reasonably likely to be provided in the future to or behalf of the claimant as a result of the injury or wrongful death. pursuant to a, any state or federal health, sickness, income disability, zent, or workers' compensation law. -- b, any health sickness, income disability, or accident insurance that provides health benefits or income disability coverage. c, any contract or agreement of any group, organization, partnership, or corporation to provide, pay for, or reimburse the cost of medical, hospital,er dental, or income disability benefits. and d, any other publicly private program. four, compensatory dadgets. the term compensatory damages means objectively verifiable monetary losses incurred as a result of the provision of, use of, or payment for, or failure to provide use, or pay for health care services or medical
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products. such as past and future medical expenses. loss of past and future earnings. cost of obtaining domestic services. loss of employment and loss of business or employment opportunities. damages for physical and emotional pain. suffering, inconvenience, physical impayment, mental anguish, disfigurement. loss of society and companion ship. loss of consoshes yum other than loss of domestic service. injury to reputation and all other nonpecuniary lawsuit of any kind or nature. the term compensatory damages includes economic damages and noneconomic damages as such terms are defined in this section. five, contingency, the term contingency includes all compensation to any person or persons which is payable only if a recovery is affected on behalf of one or more claimants. six, economic damages.
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the term economic damages means objectively verifiable monetary losses incurred as a result of the provision of, use of, or payment for, or failure to provide use or pay for health care services or medical products such as past and future medical expenses, loss of past and future earnings, cost of obtaining domestic services, loss of employment, and loss of business or employment opportunities. . seven, health care lawsuit. it means any concerning of health care goods or services or any medical product affecting intrastate commerce or any health care liability action concerning of provision of health care goods or services or any medical product affecting intrastate commerce brought in a state or federal court or pursuant to an alternative dispute resolution system against a health care provider, a health care
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organization or the manufacture r, distributor, marketer, promoter or seller of a medical product regardless of the theory of liability in which the claim is based or the name of claimants, plaintiffs or other parties or the number of claims causes action. such terms does not include a claim or action which is based on criminal liability which seeks civil fines or penalties paid to federal, state or local government or which is grounded in antitrust. eight, health care liability action. the term health care liability action means a civil action brought in a state or federal court or pursuant to an alternative dispute resolution system against a health care provider, a health care organization or the manufacturer, distributor, supplier, marketer, promoter or seller of a medical product regardless of the theory of
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liability on which the claim is based or the number of plaintiffs, defendants or other parties or the number of causes of action in which the claimant ledges a health care liability claim -- aledges a health care liability claim. nine, health care liability claim. the term health care liability claim means a demand by any person whether or not pursuant to a.d.r. against a health care provider, health care organization or the manufacturer, distributor, supplier, marketer, promoter or seller of a medical product, including but not limited to third party claims, cross-claims, counterclaims or contribution claims which are based upon the provision of, use of or payment for or the failure to provide, use or pay for health care services or medical product regardless of the theory of liability on which the claim is based or the number of plaintiffs, defendants or other parties or the number of causes of action.
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10, health care organization. the term health care organization means any person or entity which is obligated to provide or pay for health benefits under any health plan, including any person or entity acting as a contract or arrangement with the health care organization to provide or administer any health benefit. 11, health care provider. the term health care provider means any person or entity required by state or federal laws or regulations to be licensed, registered or certified to provide health care services and being either so licensed, registered or certified or exempted from such requirement by other statute or regulation. 12, health care goods for services. the term health care goods or services means any goods or services provided by a health care organization, provider or by any individual working under the supervision of a health care provider that relates to the diagnosis, prevention or
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treatment of any human disease or impairment or the assessment or care of the health of human beings. 13, malicious intent to injury -- injure. it means intentionally causing or attempting to cause physical injury other than providing health care goods or services. 14, medical product. the term medical product means a drug, device or biological product intended for humans and the terms drug, device and biological product have the meanings given such terms in sections 201-g-1 and 201-h of the federal, food, drug and cosmetic act. and section 351-a of the public health service act respectively, including any component or raw material used therein but excluding health care services. 15, noneconomic damages.
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the term noneconomic damages means damages for physical and emotional pain, suffering, inconvenience, physical impairment, mental anguish, disfigurement, loss of enjoyment to life, loss of society and companionship, loss of consortium other than loss of domestic service. damages, injuries to reputation and other nonat the kuhn year losses of any kind -- nonpecuniary losses of any kind. punitive damages means deterrence and not solely for compensatory purposes against a health care provider, health care organization or a manufacturer, distributor or a supplier of a medical product. punitive damages are neither economic or noneconomic damages. 17, recovery. the term recovery means the net sum refer covered after deducting any disbursements or
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costs incurred of connection of prosecution or settlement of the claim including all costs paid or advanced by any person. cost of health care incurred by the plaintiff and the attorney's office overhead costs or charges for legal services are not deductible disbursements or costs for such purpose. 18, state. the term state means each of the several states, the district of columbia, the commonwealth of puerto rico, the virgin islands, guam, american samoa, the northern mariana islands, the trust territory of the pacific islands, and any other territory or possession of the united states or any political subdivision thereof. section 508, affect on other loss. a, vaccine injury. one, to the extent that title 21 of the public health service act establishes a federal rule of law applicable to a civil action brought for a vaccine related death -- injury or
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death, a, this title does not affect the application of the rule of law to such an action and, b, any rule of law prescribed by this title in conflict with the rule of law of such title 21 shall not apply to such action. two, if there is an aspect of a civil action brought for a vaccine-related injury or death to which a federal rule of law under title 21 of the public health service act does not apply, then this title or otherwise applicable law as determined under this title will apply to such aspect of such action. b, other federal law. accept as provided in this -- except as provided in this section, nothing in this title shall deem any defense available to a defendant in a health care lawsuit -- the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i ask that the motion to recommit be considered as read. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection? without objection, so ordered. does the gentleman from
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california continue to reserve his point of order? mr. waxman: i withdraw the point of order. the speaker pro tempore: the reservation is withdrawn. pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york is recognized for five minutes in support of his motion. mr. lee: thank you. i, like many of my colleagues, any strong supporter of the underlying provision in h.r. 847, the james zadroga 9/11 health bill. in fact, i am a co-sponsor of the bill and believe we should pass it for 9/11 heroes. unfortunately, h.r. 847 is not on the floor today because the same harmful job-killing tax hikes that were added to the bill in july are still here today. i'm a new member of congress, i'm from new york, i spent my entire career in the private sector before coming here, not in politics, focused on growing jobs in the manufacturing sector. and i can tell you firsthand these taxes will kill jobs in
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the united states. these are taxes on new jobs, and i share the frustration of so many americans when congress talks a good game about creating jobs but does everything possible to send them offshore. these taxes without a doubt will send more jobs offshore. and with 15 million american workers out of work, it is unwise and unnecessary to pit america's jobless against the 9/11 heroes. earlier today i signed a letter with the entire new york delegation to the house leadership urging that this bill be considered without procedural games or poison pills meant to make the other party look bad. this motion to recommit lives up to that request. specifically, this motion eliminates the job-killing tax hikes and instead finances the bill through spending cuts just as the american people are
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urging us to do in each and every one of our districts. it eliminates the duplicative public health service act slush fund. it repeals the poorly drafted comparative effectiveness research program and the medicare independent payment advisory board. it also eliminates incentives to overualityize services by -- overutilizing services by changing rates. c.b.o. says it reduces the deficit over the next 10 years. i want to repeat that. it reduces the deficit. it takes the additional -- it takes the additional step to save money and improve care for everyone by enacting something that was missing from the health care bill that was passed earlier this year. it enacts meaningful medical liability reform supported by both sides of the aisle. by passing this motion to recommit we can remove the harmful job-killing tax hikes and do what's right for these
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9/11 heroes and leave the politics aside. i urge adoption of this motion, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. waxman: mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to the motion to recommit. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. waxman: this legislation is designed to provide health care services for the heroes on 9/11 , the policemen and the firemen who didn't know what would be in store for them if they went in the world trade center. many of them are suffering from the health consequences of their activities, and we owe them the obligation to provide those services that they need. what does this motion to recommit do? it would first of all reduce the payment to the health care providers, making it harder for those people to get access to the doctors to treat them. but the worst thing about this motion to recommit is it puts
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in play by striking a pay-for that's been passed three times already in the house, and it cuts areas of the health care reform that is designed to save money and designed to prevent problems. there are 248 organizations that have signed a letter opposing these kinds of cuts. this was offered in the senate and rejected very soundly. these are groups that are concerned that we have a health system that is there to provide public health and disaster relief. can you imagine the irony that the public health measures we're trying to put into place so we can deal with chronic disease or protect us from health threats, from natural disasters or acts of terrorism would be struck? they would wipe that out in
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order to pay for this bill. that is not the way to pay for this legislation. groups such as the heart association, the cancer society, the diabetes association, the lung association, the maternal association, all 248 groups urge a no vote on this motion to recommit. and, mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield to the gentleman from new york, very important member of our committee and the champion for this legislation, the gentleman, mr. weiner, the balance of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. weiner: here in washington there are a couple of different ways you can kill a bill. one is the honest way. you vote no. put your card in, you press the no button, it puts no up on the board. another way to kill a bill in this town is offering up amendments or offering up procedures and offering up confusion about the bill that it goes down for that reason and you don't quite have your
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fingerprints on it. mr. lee is an honorable man, he's a good man, but i have to tell you as simply as i can. if you vote for his motion to recommit, the bill dies. if you vote for this motion that says essentially we are going to take out the money for the care, it doesn't matter how many 9/11 events you go to, doesn't matter how many times you send out press releases, if you vote for this amendment you vote to kill the bill, period. and you want to relit gait the health care bill, ok. we are going to get to do that the first tuesday in november. people are going to be talking about the health care bill is a good bill or bad bill, that's do that later, let's do the politics later, let's do the right thing now. let's try to take care of the people in this bill with money to do it. i understand this is a political town and we are in the midst of a political season, but can't we look around, can't we at this moment look around and say this isn't the time for a parliamentary move or a clever motion to recommit?
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my colleagues, when you come down here, the only way you can go home and say that you care for the victims of september 11 is if you vote a no on this motion and a yes on final passage. that's it. the people in this room and back home are too smart to be fooled by anything else. i want to pay for it that way. as mr. waxman says, if you vote for this amendment, we will argue for the health care. will we argue for abortion? no, let's not do that anymore. if we do it let's do it in november in elections. we are going to send tv commercials and ads. now, let's do the right thing. i want to see every republican and every democrat say, you know what, there's one thing we agree upon. it's the people that gave up their health on september 11 and the days after deserve our care and our respect. we need a no vote, my colleagues. i have to tell you something. i worked with the people who are advocating for 9/11 health for nine years and some of them are here. they are too smart. they are going to know that if you vote in favor of this
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motion to recommit, plain and simple, you are voting to kill this bill. we're not going to let it happen. nine years is too long. but i tell you something about time. it's also pretty darn close to election day. in 434 districts in this country are people who have 9/11 cough. i hope they are watching this debate and i hope they watch not just final passage which hopefully we get to because if this lee amendment passes this bill is going down. we can't let that happen. i urge a no vote on the motion to recommit and a yes vote on passage. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the previous question is on -- is ordered. the question son the motion. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the noes have it. the motion is not agreed to. >> mr. speaker. i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a votey the yeas -- a vote by the yeas and nays will rise.
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a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 8 and clause 9 of rule 20, this 15-minute vote on this motion to recommit will be followed by five-minute votes will be followed by vote on the passage of the bill if ordered and motions to suspend the rules an h.r. 3685, h.r. 5993, and house resolution 1326. s that 15-minute vote. 15-minute vote, members. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this this 181 and the nays are --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 185 and the nays are 244. the motion is not adopted.
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the question is on the passage of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the bill is passed and without objection -- >> mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. waxman: i call for the yeas and nays. recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker: on this vote, the yeas are 268, the nays are 106.
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the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will remind all persons in the gallery that they're here as guests of the house and any manifestation of approval or disapproval of the proceedings is in clear violation of the rules of the
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house. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from california, mr. filner, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3685, on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 364, h r. 3685, a bill to require the secretary of veterans affairs to include on the main page of the internet website of the department of veterans' affairs a hyperlink to the vetsuccess internet website and to publicize such internet website. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 421, the nays are zero. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 425, the nays are zero. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, and the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from california, mr. filner, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5993 as amended on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 5993, a bill to amend title 38, united states code, to ensure that beneficiaries of service members group life insurance receive financial counseling and disclosure information regarding life insurance payments and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes
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by electronic device. members, this is a five-minute vote, five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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. the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 358 and the nays are 66. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from california, mr. berman, to suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1326 as amended on which the yeas and
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nays were ordered. the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1326, resolution calling on the government of japan to immediately address the growing problem of abduction to and retention of united states citizen minor children in japan, to work closely with the government of the united states to return these children to their custodial parent or to the original jurisdiction for a custody determination in the united states, provide left-behind parents immediate access to their children and to adopt without delay the 1980 hague convention on the civil aspects of international child abduction. the speaker pro tempore: members, the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to the resolution as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. members, this is a five-minute vote. five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the
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national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 416, the nays are one. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. without objection, the title amended.
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members will clear the well. the speaker pro tempore: members, let's clear the well. for what purpose does the gentleman from illinois seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to remove mr. defazio, the gentleman from oregon, as co-sponsor of h.r. 5820, cited as the chemical safety act of
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2010. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i ask for unanimous consent to be removed as a co-sponsor from h.r. 5820. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan seek recognition? mr. levin: mr. speaker, i call up h r. 2378 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 386, h r. 2378 a bill to amend title 7 of the terror act of 1930 to declare that fundamental exchange rate is
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actionable under the countervailing and anti-dumping duty laws and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the amendment in the nature of the substitute recommended by the committee on ways and means printed in the bill is adopted and the bill, as amended is considered read. the gentleman from michigan, mr. levin, and the gentleman from michigan, mr. camp, each will control 30 minutes. the gentleman from michigan mr. levin: if i may, i'll wait until the house is in order. the speaker pro tempore: members, let's have some order. the gentleman is are recognized. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself three minutes and ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. levin: colleagues, this is an important moment for this
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house and for the people of our nation. there's a real problem, china's persistent manipulation of its currency. and that requires real action. under our leadership, real action is now being taken in this house. china's practices represent, as the secretary of treasury indicated in his testimony before us, and i quote, a major distortion in the global economy, end of quote. for our country, it's impacted on our trade deficit with china. 2009, $226 billion, and it's impacted on our jobs. on our jobs. their goods come to us as a result of their manipulation cheaper, and our goods to them more expensive. there's a 15% to 35% or 40%
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imbalance a tilted field of competition. the estimates are it means 500,000 to 1.5 million jobs. in this -- this manipulation is one of the causes of outsourcing of our jobs, manufacturing, and other good jobs. talk hasn't worked. less than 2% appreciation has occurred since just before the last g-20 meeting when the chinese said that they would make their currency more flexible. it was said by our leadership, additional steps are needed and this bill is just such a step. so after two days of hearings before the committee, i worked over a weekend with our majority staff to modify, make
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sure this bill was fully compliant with our international w.t.o. obligations. it is compliant. china has an economic strategy for our businesses and workers -- economic strategy. for our businesses and workers, it's vital that our nation has an active economic strategy and this is one important piece of that strategy. so i strongly urge support of this legislation. i yield back the balance of my time and reserve it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. camp: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is are recognized. mr. camp: let me start by saying, it is truly disappointing that this is the only trade bill the past two years marked up by the ways and means committee.
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i find it unacceptable that this is the sum total of our trade agenda. while this legislation addresses an important issue, it will not address many more pressing trade concerns with china and won't address the concerns of doubling exports in five years. to achieve those goal we must move expeditiously on pending free trade agreements, work harder to move markets, and work hard to address issues all over the world and with china. we have held four hearings on china a loan this year. we heard from witnesses who stress that china's currency policy is only one element in our relationship. it's not that it's not a problem or a priority but there are far larger issues with regard to china and our trade imbalance, issues like intellectual property rights, indigenous innovation, export restraints on rare earth minerals and a host of other
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nontariff barriers wreaking havoc on american employers, their workers and our economy. despite my disappointment about the lack of a broader trade agenda and the lack of action on these other concerns with respect to china, it would be an enormous mistake to give up completely on addressing china's currency policy. we all agree that china's currency is fundamentally misaligned and that china must take prompt action to allow market forces to determine the value of its currency. at the same time, it's important that any legislation be consistent with our international obligations and be effective. any legislation that could potentially expose the united states to w.t.o. sanctioned retaliation would undoubtedly do more harm than good and would undermine our efforts to get china to comply with its obligations. at hearings over the past few weeks a number of witnesses and republican members raised concerns about the w.t.o. consistency of the original
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version of h.r. 378. as a result of these concerns, chairman levin completely rewrote the bill. the version before us today has lit until common with the original, which on its face violated our w.t.o. obligation. it addresses many of the criticisms raised by witnesses and by republican members and i appreciate that the chairman has taken these concerns into account. unlike the original version, this bill does not mandate that the commerce department automatically adjust anti-dumping and countervailing duty to account for china's policy. this allows us to consider many factors to determine if china meets the requirements and does not prejudge an outcome. while i have concerns, i believe the bill before us today does not on its face violate our w.t.o. obligations. i will vote for this bill
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because it sends a clear signal to china that congress' patience is running out but does not give china an excuse to retaliate against u.s. companies and their workers. while we can't can not pass legislation that violate ours w.t.o. commitments and would result in w.t.o. sanctioned retaliation, we cannot allow ourselves to be -- if china retaliates against the bill at this stage, i expect that the u.s. administration as a whole will work swiftly to pursue every option available, including thorough action of the w.t.o. china's posturing and bad behavior cannot dictate trade pl policy. this legislation also sends an important cig gnat to the administration. it's time to produce results. the administration must step up its efforts to set a clear timeline for action. the administration should work to ensure that the global
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imbalances which includes china's currency policy is on the agenda at the november g-20 meetings in seoul. we should also engage in bilateral treaty negotiation. as i noted, we have been forced to this point. the legislation we are considering today is better than the original but won't resolve the trade imbalances with china. with that, i yield the balance of my time to the gentleman from texas, mr. brady, for the purpose of managing the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan, mr. levin. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. levin: that statement rewrites the history of this legislation. i suggest that everybody go back and look at the opening statement of the ranking member. we have urged support of the petition, only three republicans supported it.
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i regret the partisan inflection here. i won't engage in it. i hope we get bipartisan support. i now yield a minute and a half to a gentleman who is so actively engaged on these issues, mr. mcdermott from the state of washington. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. mcdermott: mr. speaker, there is an old chinese proverb that says a journey of 1,000 miles begins with the first step. and i rise today in support of this legislation, which is before us to take the first step toward adressing the egregious im-- addressing the egregious imbalance between chinese's currency and our own. they have not been playing fair in the arena. this bill says that chearn must become a responsible player -- china must become a responsible player. subsidizing by suppressing
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their currency is an unfairway to do it. this legislation is a good step but it's not my preferred step. i'd prefer the united states, together with our partners, to bring a multilateral w.t.o. resolution. this bill helps the commerce department do a fair job of maybing the multilateral mechanisms more available to u.s. businesses. after years of an unlevel playing field, it is time to act. and this legislation is the right kind of measured first step we must take now. i urge the passage of this bill, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: mr. speaker, i grant myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brady: i appreciate the effort, mr. speaker, by chairman levin, to address the concerns of ranking member camp and other republican members that have been raised at our various hearings.
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while this addresses w.t.o. inconsistent issues, this bill compels china to appreciate its currency, to reduce the trade deficit won't be realized and therefore i oppose this bill. rather than focus on china's currency policy alone, our priority must be creating american jobs by promoting u.s. exports, and this bill doesn't do enough to provide new market access to american businesses, farmers and workers. if we are to meet the president's goal of doubling exports, we must focus our energy on tearing down real substantive barriers to u.s. access to china's customers. -- consumers. we must require china to better protect intellectual property rights, cease its indigent's policies and remove other barriers to u.s. exports. such an effort would benefit thousands of american workers than to focus on china currency alone.
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i'm concerned that moving this bill will make it more difficult for us to resolve these other issues. i think we ought to be careful to avoid doing more harm than good in tearing down these barriers. breaking down barriers to u.s. exports is difficult work and requires concerted effort by congress and the administration. beginning with rather than paying lip service to pending trade agreement, we must find a way to move these agreements forward. currently there is no clear end date for the administration to resolve issues related to the u.s.-colombia-panama trade agreements. the administration must also return to the negotiating table and complete bilateral investment treaty negotiations with china. entering into a bit with china could help on many of these issues, and it is necessary to ensure that americans have the same rights in china as our other trading partners.
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mr. speaker, while this bill is improved from its original version, it is no substitute for a comprehensive china policy that the administration and the majority have failed to give us. i urge and strongly urge a no vote on this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: it's my privilege to yield a minute and a half to another member of ow committee, mr. neal from massachusetts. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. neal: i thank the gentleman. this legislation is about supporting american manufacturing jobs, plain and simple. the peterson institute suggests this would increase american exports to $100 billion to $150 billion a year. the ways and means committee held three hearings on this issue saying that china is intervening on currency markets to continue its unfair advantage over american manufacturers and workers. the committee reported out a bipartisan bill with important changes to make it fully consistent with w.t.o. rules. in short, this bill allows
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currency manipulation to be considered in trade remedy cases. it is consistent with a free market solution to enabling fair trade. laurence lindsey, who was george w. bush's own economic advisor, says that the chinese clearly understatement their trade right. it is the chinese, not americans, shaping how much is bought and from whom. this bill is not a solution to all of the challenges relating to u.s.-china trade, but it is a suggest and much-needed trade remedy to help american businesses and workers compete. new additions is needed in response to negotiations that time and again have been stymied in both democratic and republican administrations. this is a good step in the right direction. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: right now i'd like
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to yield two minutes to the gentleman from louisiana, who has played a key role on opening trade barrier for u.s. products, mr. boustany. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. boustany: thank you, mr. speaker. let me be clear to start, china's currency policy is wrong and harmful for the u.s. and for china. but it's one of many problems. a whole host of problems that we heard about, i.p.r. protections, licensing and standards, all these nontariff barriers that we've heard so much about. so if we're going to lock at how we approach this, -- look at how we approach this, we have to be consistent with the w.t.o. and other international obligations. b, whatever we do has to be effective. those are the parameters that secretary geithner himself laid out. i have questions as to whether this approach will meet either of those. yes, the bill on its face is w.t.o. compliant, but if we are to implement this connection between countervailing duties
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and currency valuation, i believe that we'll be subject to challenge, and i regret we have not heard from the department of commerce, u.s. trade rep treasury on their read on this. the administration has not made a statement on this bill as to its effectiveness or whether or not it's consistent with our international obligations. but to a broader point. if we're going to have leverage, we need trade policy and we do not have a trade policy. ranking member camp has already made the statement that we've had nothing beyond this in the discussions about what are we going to do to really have leverage and to move forward with a trade policy? i've heard from the administration that we do need to move with the south korean free trade agreement. we need to do that. we need a birat rale trade investment with china and with other countries. we've had no movement on that. finally, i think it's just unacceptable that this administration did not send a representative to the
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conference in asia recently. we're not even showing up on the playing field. how can the u.s. be truly credible if we're not actively engaged in a trade policy that makes sense? u.s. credibility is on the line. we have to prove we keep our commitments. passing this bill is going to do nothing to solve our trade imbalance with china. it really -- it's not the kind of tool, i believe, that we need. we need to move forward in multilateral negotiations in vigorous ways and -- mr. brady: i yield an additional minute. mr. boustany: we are starting to see the makings of a currency war out there where they're devaluing their currency at our expense. that's why this needs to be addressed at the multilateral level. i feel we can do this in a responsible way. because of these concerns i am going to oppose this way, but i do want to say that, chairman
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levin, i want to thank you for working back on what is a very bad bill to something that is improved. i think we can do better. i wish we were able to work further on this so we can have a truly strong bipartisan agreement to approaching very complicated and important commercial and economic relationship with china. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i now yield a minute and a half to another distinguished member of our committee, mr. becerra from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. becerra: mr. speaker, we can talk or we can act. international trade is a high stakes, cutthroat business, and every time we simplely talk the other side acts, and every time they -- we simply talk the other side acts and every time they act another american loses a job. it's time to act for what the american people has been asking us to do, take action on what
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we know is unfair trade practices going on which cause us not only to lose jobs but to lose american businesses that can't continue to sustain themselves here and move abroad. we know that the chinese have been playing with their currency. everyone knows that the chinese have been playing with their currency. the chinese know it. you know what, they're going to do everything they can for their workers. they are going to do everything they can for their businesses. we can't beat them for that, but, please, let's not let them beat us at what we can do well. and that's why it's time to do this legislation. some estimates, credible estimates say if we were to act on china's currency manipulation we could return a million american jobs to this country, that we could reduce our quarter of a trillion trade deficit by $100 billion with china. it is time for us to take action because the chinese are certainly taking action.
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we can either take bold steps as the american public has asked us or we can take baby steps. it's time for us to recognize that americans are doing the best they can to produce american products so we can sell them, not just here, but abroad. but if we allow someone to manipulate their curpsy by 25% to 40% -- currency by 25% to 40% making their products look cheap here and making our products look expensive abroad, then shame on us because the american public is working hard. it's time to pass this legislation. it's time to take bold steps, not baby steps. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i at this time yield three minutes to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. murphy. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. murphy: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i thank my colleague, tim ryan, who is the democrat leader on this, and i as the republican lead on this. we know this is an important bill.
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the perfect is the enemy of the necessary. we're arguing about trade policies, what the w.t.o. might think, what china might think, what negotiations might happen. while the american people are out there saying, what are you doing about our jobs? china has been involved in a number of things, steel dumping and dumping products here and setting these unfair currency practices which lead to up to 40% discount. and while american companies see their factories close and american workers get their pink slips they wonder if washington gets it. well, we do and today is our chance to make good on that. there was a time when made in the u.s.a. was a standard for the world. it was a matter of fact that you owned the best. we earn that esteem and now we are being to lose our position as global leader when next year china overtakes us as the biggest manufacturer in the world. yet, china has never accepted the basic rules of fair trade. that's what we're standing up for in this bill, fair trade.
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and carlos gutierrez said that china's currency valuation does not adequately respond to market forces. treasury secretary tim geithner believes that china is manipulating its currency. president obama said the same thing saying we need a two-way street but when president obama goes to talk to the chinese they push him back in a corner because we have $800 billion in debt to them and they continue to stall and stall. now, i don't care who's in the white house, republican, democrat, whoever, but i don't want another country saying to my president that we're not going to talk to you about these things and somehow make it sound like it's the united states' fault. this is a thing that republicans and democrats alike is backing. and action delayed is action denied. only when they cultivate rather than stifle american manufacturing and holds china and other trading partners fully accountable for cheating on trade will we begin to revitalize that manufacturing sector. if we unleash our factories and workers from an overly
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burdensome regulatory requirement, give them the tools they need to ensure that all countries play fair and by the rules, the american manufacturer will win and the global -- in the global marketplace every time. with its dedicated work force and dedicated ingenuity american manufacturing has a chance to not just lead us out of debt and deficit but create hundreds of thousands of new, well-paying, high-quality jobs. we in congress must do everything we can to support american manufacturing, and this goal, not stand in their way and not quyleet wring our hands in worry. we can pass the currency reform for fair trade act tomorrow. we can still speak softly but it sure is nice to cover a big stick. and with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i now yield to another member of our committee, the distinguished gentleman from california, mr. thompson, 1 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: i thank the gentleman for yielding.
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mr. speaker and members, i rise in support of this legislation in part because it will help level the playing field for america's renewable energy manufacturers. china's time and again turned an unfair trade practice to promote their manufactures and it's time we put a stop manufacturers and it's time we put a stop to that. solar panels was made in america, yet in 2008 china became the largest producer of solar panels in china. right now it's cheaper to purchase them here in the united states because of china's manipulated currency. this is unacceptable. in my district, our solar manufacturers compete on a global scale, but they are at a huge disadvantage because of china's current policy. the renewable energy sector creates tens of thousands of job, generating more jobs pering me watt than any other energy technology. further, petroleum currently
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accounts for half of our total trade deficit by investing in and supporting our renewable energy manufacturers, we can help close our trade deficit and stop giving moneys to countries who, in about 40% of the cases, are not our friends. it's time to support american jobs, american renewable energy manufacturers, and again, bring those jobs home. i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of h.r. 2378. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i'm reserving my time. i think -- does mr. brady have any other speakers? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas has reserved. mr. brady: mr. chairman, at this time, we're prepared to close. mr. levin: we're not.
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mr. brady: then i are reserve my time. mr. levin: i yield a minute and a half to another very distinguished member of the ways and means committee, mr. blumenauer of oregon. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is are recognized. mr. blumenauer: i appreciate the gentleman's courtesy and working to have a pice of legislation that can be brought forward in a bipartisan fashion, listening to the concerns repeatedly expressed by members of the committee. i come from an area that is dependent on trade. nike, harry & david and others wouldn't exist without international trade. this makes a difference to people in my community. when we find, as the international monetary fund has found, the currency of the chinese is significant undervalued, it makes united states exports more expensive than chi -- in china and
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chinese imports more -- cheaper in the united states. our success for trade is contingent on our making sure we are using the tools in an aggressive fashion. we should be using all the tools in the international trade toolbox, the w.t.o., bilateral trade agreements, forums the united states and china are party to, all of these to make sure we are ensuring this level playing field that people are talking about here. if, as has been estimated, china's currency policy could reduce our gross domestic product by over a percentage point when we're trying to jump start the economy, this is precisely the thing we should do moving forward. mr. chairman, mr. speaker, i appreciate having an opportunity to vote on this today. i think this sends a strong signal that we want our international trade are regime to work, that we are not just
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mindlessly entering into these agreements but we are going to make sure they are enforced, this is an important first step. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i yield a minute and a half ms. sanchez from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is are recognized. ms. sanchez: i thank mr. levin and other leaders for their work on this bill this bill is about one thing, protecting the american economy. we must give americans the ability to sell goods abroad. this bill does that. it gives us stronger tools to address currency manipulation and protect american businesses. we can compete and win against any nation in the world if we're all playing by the same rules. china isn't. opponents say this bill will start a trade war.
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i say we're already in the trade war, and china is shooting cannons and we're stand here -- standing here shooting b.b. pellets. promises were made. we've held up our end of the bargain, china has not. it has manipulated its currency and looked the other way while its businesses advertise schemes to avoid paying us the duties that were owed. for nearly 10 years, the administration failed to address the currency problem. meanwhile, it caused small businesses across the couldn't arery to close their doors, including one in my own district, michael's furniture store. for nearly 10 years, our go slow approach allowed china's job-killing policy to flourish. the time for waiting is over. given the unemployment rate in this country and the economic pain families feel across the country, shame on us if we fail to support this bill. i want to thank again the
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chairman and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i yield two minutes to the distinguished gentleman from michigan, mr. rogers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. rogers: while this congress and administrations of both parties fiddled, american manufacturing burned. michigan workers make an average of $12,000 a year less than they did a decade ago. our trade deficit has skyrocketed with manufacturing goods deficit up 3,000%. it's no accident and it's no coincidence. chinese currency manipulation is the driving force behind this destruction. chinese currency is at least 25% below where it should be, making their goods cheap and destroying our manufacturing base. in michigan alone, chinese currency manipulation has destroyed some 68,000 jobs, in
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michigan alone. in my district, some 4,500 jobs are gone because this congress and both the bush and obama administration have refused to do anything but talk on chinese currency manipulation. today's vote is a tough first step toward fair trade with china. fair trade and the livelihood of michigan workers finally lets them compete on a level playing field with the start and passage of this bill. i would yield back the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i yield one minute to the distinguished chair of the rules committee, ms. slaughter from the state of new york. ms. slaughter: i'm going to for gow the nicities this afternoon because i only have a few minutes to tell you what i think. there are times this congress
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overwhelms me into anger. we have sat by since the second world war was over watching american jobs go to rebuild germany, japan, and others. we have jeopardized our own needs. we believe we can be the superpower and not manufacture anything, i think we are sorely mistaken. we are dependent on other countries for all the goods we need, not only domestically but militarily, i think we're in sorry shape. our trade policies that we have had have been awful and bipartisanly awful. as far as i'm concerned and i hope a lot of my colleagues agree with me, until we get resip rossity, until every trade agreement -- reciprocity, until every trade agreement we sign says the other country has to agree, we're way late on this, we're 20 years late on this. we're right at the brink of financial disaster in this country. the jobs we have lost are not coming back.
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we have to rebuild a new economy. we can't do it if chi? -- china is going to do it all first. not only pass this bill today but demand stronger policies in this country, to save us for the next generation. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: at this time, i'd like to yield three minutes to the gentleman from texas who is focused on jobs and spending and getting this economy back on track, mr. hensarling. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hensarling: mr. speaker, as i look at the available evidence, i believe that the preponderance of the evidence does show that china is ma lip -- manipulating its currency. i don't question the problem, i question the remedy. and i question whether or not punishing american consumers is the right remedy to apply to this situation, which i believe that ultimately if this legislation is enacted, that's
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what will happen. we know -- we don't know what the estimates are, 5% to maybe 30% that their currency may be overvalued and china should let their currency float. they're hurting their own people by doing what they're doing. but in addition, mr. speaker, one thing i do know they're doing is, they are subsidizing goods to the american people at a time when many family budgets are being strained. so the available evidence shows that if this was passed, if actually the -- their currency was revalued, the prices of chinese good may go up 10%. a pair of shoes a mother needs for her child to go to school, maybe it's a pair of glasses. maybe it's toys at christmas.
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all become more expensive. so to some extent, there's a question, should we pass a law, pick winners and losers between manufacturers and consumers? is that something we should be doing? i'm not sure that it is. in addition, mr. speaker, we all know our history. we know that presently we are still mired, whether or not some economic bureau tells us we're out of recession, we know the american people continue to suffer through the greatest economic cry sess we've seen since the great depression, one of the most exacerbating factors was the tariff. some say we're already having a trade war. by historic standards we're probably having a trade skirmish. but we know that already the administration last year elected to impose tar are riffs
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on chinese tires and guess what? they imposed tariffs on our poultry. one of the few areas where we actually had a favorable balance of trade. so import tar are riffs up to 105% on u.s. exports of poultry. so any type of jobs that need -- that may be gained in manufacturing may be lost in agriculture or some other area. i'm not convinced the proponents of this bill have made the case that on net this would create more jobs in america. it would create in more than -- create more in one sector than another but precipitating a trade war at a time when we're in tough economic times, making it more difficult for consumers to afford the items they need to provide for their families, i think is unwise public policy. i would urge a defeat of this legislation. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i yield myself 10 seconds.
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to the gentleman who just spoke, without a job, one can't buy goods at any price. this bill is about jobs. i now yield one minute to the gentleman from ohio, mr. boccieri. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. boccieri: the american people are watching. while we wear different jerseys, we're supposed to be playing for america this vote today is about whether we're going to stand up and fight for americans. just last week, the chinese government ordered all our domestic manufacturers who were building cars in china to turn over all their battery technology. ohio, who has 25 pk of her economy based on the auto -- automotive industry can't afford to stand on the sideline as countries like china refuse to play by the rules. critics believe this legislation could start a trade war. america is already in a trade war. the question is, whether the u.s. government will show up for the fight. enforcing the agreed upon trade rules is not protectionist.
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the chinese practices like currency manipulation are protectionist. ohio lost more than 183,000 manufacturing jobs because of bad trade deals. i say you can't afford to by tennis shoes if you don't have a job. that's what this bill is about. workers -- the past two years alone, workers from my district received trade adjustment assistance because of bad trade deals. we respect the chinese culture and people but we are playing for america. we've got to build it, assemble it and manufacture it here in our country. we can't be the movers of wealth, we have to be the producers of wealth. it starts with this vote today. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i'd like to yield two minutes to the distinguished gentleman from california, mr. rohrabacher. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. rohrabacher: i rise in support of the resolution. i think the chinese clique that
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dominates that country has mistreated its own people, because they are the worst kind of tyrants one can imagine, but they have been treating the american people in a malicious way as well. the fact is, we have adopted policies that are very positive toward the chinese and the chinese government that have been to the detriment of the united states. we have permitted a one-way free trade policy. we have permitted a lack of access to their markets while they have total access to our markets. we have put up with a wholesale theft of american technology and yes, we have put up with the fact that they have manipulated their currency in a way that ensures the flow of wealth into their society as opposed to an equal relationship that would benefit both couldn't areries. what we have to do is decide, are we going to permit the
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clique that runs china to continue to do great damage to the people of the united states of america, or are we going to provide some sort of action that we can take if they are doing -- if they are manipulating the currency in a way that shifts the wealth from our society and the jobs from our society and transports them to china? and let me note this, in a dictatorship like china, we are not talking about wealth that's raising the standard of living for their people. we are talking about wealth that's in the end that is controlled by a clique of gangsters who are the worst human rights abusers in the world. and what are they doing with this profit that they make from this unfair trade relationship and the manipulation of currency? they are building a military, a modern military based on technology that they have stolen from us and an unfair trade relationship that we have acquiesced to over the years. it's about time we have legislation that will at least prevent them from manipulating
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the currency and give us an alternative action that we can take to try to prevent the manipulation of currency on the part of the chinese. so i rise in support of this resolution. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: thank you, mr. speaker. i now yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from north carolina, a member of our ways and means committee, mr. etheridge. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. etheridge: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise in support of fair trade and making sure other countries play by the rules and in support of h.r. 2378, the currency reform for fair trade act. just this week, china announced tariffs as high as 105.4% on polet raoux because of a trumped up dumping charge. but the real distortion is currency manipulation. a huge substantive to their manufacturers and a hidden tariff on u.s. goods. china's currency manipulation
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allows them to sell the world cheaper goods, costing us jobs and economic growth. this bill would give our trade negotiators the tools they need to investigate this manipulation and take action if appropriate. it would restore balance to our trade relationship. north carolina's producers are second to none, and given the level playing field, our workers can compete with anybody. but how are they supposed to compete with a country that manipulates its currency? i say it is not fair. mr. speaker, we should pass this bill and send a clear message to china that it is time to play by the rules. i call on my colleagues to stand up for our exporters, our producers and the people of america and join me in supporting american industry and h.r. 2378. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i reserve, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: mr. speaker, i now yield one minute to the distinguished gentleman from indiana, mr. visclosky. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. visclosky: i thank the gentleman for yielding, and i want to thank chairman levin and mr. camp for bringing this bill to the floor and want to thank mr. ryan, mr. murphy for their very, very good work on this bill. this is a jobs issue, and there should be no doubt in anyone's mind that that is what we are talking about today. in 1990 in the state of indiana 226,000 more people worked in manufacturing than in government. this year 7,000 more people work in manufacturing than government because 165,000 manufacturing employees lost their jobs. that's 165,000 families in the state of indiana alone that lost good-paying manufacturing
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jobs. one of the causes is the currency manipulation by the chinese government. we were told by the last administration, if we just dialogue with the chinese we would solve this problem. we're told by the current administration, if we just dialogue with the chinese we will solve this problem. we were told by the chinese on may 18, 2007, if we just dialogue on this problem we will solve it. the solution is on the floor today, and i would ask my colleagues to strongly support passage of h.r. 2378 and give this administration the fortitude to stop dialoguing with the chinese and to take serious action on jobs. i would yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: mr. speaker, i now yield one minute to the gentleman from oregon, mr. defazio.
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mr. defazio: i was surprised to hear the gentleman from texas and a few others on the other side find an excuse to oppose this legislation. they find an excuse to side with their corporate ben factors. americans won't be able to afford shoes for their kids because we won't have cheap chinese exports shutting down the factories. now, what americans need is jobs. we don't need jobs in china. we need them here. with an unfairly priced currency we are losing more and more manufacturing. when the republicans controlled everything from 1994 to 2006, the congress and the presidency for a good part of that time, our trade deficit with china went up 806% and they did nothing, but they could find little problems here and there with this legislation.
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they're worried about a trade war. we're at war. we're having a trade war with china. they are supporting capitulation and we are finally starting to fight back from this side of the aisle. no, no excuses. plain and simple, are you with the american people and fair trade or are you with the the chinese, the big international corporations and their excuse for free trade which has manipulated currency, trade barriers and taking jobs away from our workers? plain and simple, where do you stand? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: mr. speaker, yielding myself 15 seconds i would make the point that the chinese currency appreciated 20% during president bush's administration. it had no impact on the trade deficit. it is only appreciated 5% under the current administration. no impact on trade deficit. with that i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: mr. speaker, it's now my special pleasure to yield two minutes to the
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gentleman who is the original co-sponsor of this important legislation, mr. ryan from ohio. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. ryan: thank you, mr. chairman. let me thank the chairman for his good work. let me thank speaker pelosi for her giving us the opportunity to bring this bill to the floor. leader hoyer, who was very instrumental in our make it in america project of which this is a major component. you know, in 19 -- the late 1970's the top 1% of the people in our country controlled about 9% of real income. and in 2007 the top 1% controlled about 23.5% of real income. if you go back and see what families, the amount of time families worked in the late 1970's compared to today, the average family works about 12 weeks more a year than they did back then. so they're making less, the average family is making less, working longer, sometimes two
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or three jobs just to make ends meet, and part of the problem has been this erosion of the manufacturing base. and what we're talking about with currency manipulation is the chinese government artificially subsidizing every single product that lands on our shores here in the united states. and so, yeah, it may be cheap because it's being subsidized by their government. but it's putting american workers and american manufacturers out of business. and if we're going to resuscitate this economy, we have got to focus as a nation on making things in america again. and if you look at the list of the supporters of this bill, tool and dime manufacturers, corn growers, you know, the supply chain for all of our manufacturing that happens in the united states, they are all supporting this bill along with all of the workers groups, all of the unions. this is something we can all agree on. and it will stimulate our economy and not add one dime to
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the deficit. and that's what this is about. for every manufacturing job you get five or six or seven spinoff jobs. manufacturing jobs pay more. there's more patents, more innovation, more research and development. this is about taking our country back. you wonder why people are anxious out there. they've been working longer, working more, getting paid less. i'd be anxious too. i'd be upset. that's what we're feeling in the country, and i think this bill is an opportunity for us to reinvest back in the united states, put people back to work and have good middle-class jobs here in the united states. mr. chairman, thank you. mr. speaker, thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: thank you, mr. ryan. how much time remains? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan has 11 minutes. the gentleman from texas has 10 3/4 minutes. mr. levin: it's now my pleasure to yield one minute to the gentleman from maine, mr.
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michaud, an active participant in discussions of trade issues. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. michaud: thank you very much, mr. chairman, for yielding. i also thank you for your leadership in this issue of bringing this bill before the house. mr. speaker, i rise today to express my strong support for h.r. 2378. this issue is simple. china's currency manipulation is illegal and it cost maine jobs. just ask paperworkers or those at newpage mill in moneyford. they have seen their co-work -- munford. they have seen their co-workers laid off. in fact, over 9,000 mainers in all sectors have lost their jobs because of our trade deficit with china which is directly related to the currency manipulation. companies like newpage and sap
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refine can't compete when china doesn't play by the rules. this bill will help us hold commean's feet to the fire for their -- china's feet to the fire for their unfair trade practices. it makes sure that america's companies are competing on a level playing field and it will save american jobs. i urge my colleagues to vote for this critical bill, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: reserve at this time. the speaker pro tempore: reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: mr. speaker, it's now my pleasure to yield two minutes to the very distinguished gentleman from new york, mr. rangel. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. rangel: let me congratulate the chairman and the ranking member of ways and means for coming together to have this civil type of discourse, having our staffs worked together, agreeing on some things, disagreeing on others. but showing that bipartisanship, while it might
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be in intensive care, at least on the ways and means committee it is not dead. we do recognize they are split among business people as to whether or not we should go forward with this bill that would point out to china. they don't have a leverage that it is time that they fear in terms of international trade. those people who buy from china and enjoy the lower prices, i can understand why they would not support the equity that we're seeking in international affairs as well as in the w.t.o. but for those americans who take a deep pride when they see made in the u.s.a., when we make it in the u.s.a. for jobs, that we don't get excited about
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the number of jobs in china, but believe it's patriotic and it hasn't reached that level then it's certainly in the best interest of the united states of america to say that we supported you, we supported you in getting into w.t.o. with that comes some obligation. if the president can't proceed with persuading him, there are other things to encourage them to do the right thing. so, mr. speaker, i hope that the chairman here and the ranking member could find some other things before we go home that we can come together on. but until that happens, congratulations to both of you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: i'll reserve at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: i now yield a minute and a half to the distinguished and a half to the distinguished member from ohio,

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